Tuesday will mark 6 months since the launch of the biggest vaccination programme in the history of the NHS. More than 1.87m COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered locally to date and strong progress continues to be made, with 95% of people aged 40 and over across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight having received their first dose.
On the Isle of Wight, more than 174,000 vaccinations have been administered since the national drive started in December.
The incredible achievement is testament to the continued hard work of dedicated colleagues and partners across the area, backed by an army of volunteers providing vital support.
Alongside GP-led vaccinations hubs on the island, the Riverside Centre, in Newport, which is led by Solent NHS Trust, will also have an alternative to the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine available shortly.
Adults aged between 25 and 29 will start to receive text messages inviting them to book an appointment to receive their COVID-19 vaccination from tomorrow morning (Tuesday).
Those who have already received their first vaccine are urged to get their second dose to ensure they are as protected as possible against the virus.
Alison Smith, Managing Director for Hampshire, Southampton and Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group, said:
“Thanks to the dedication and skill of those working across all our vaccination sites on the island, and the positive response of the island community, we have done a fantastic job in vaccinating so many people.
“In line with the change in JCVI guidance, both our GP-led hubs and the Riverside Centre look forward to vaccinating those aged 25 and over.
“If you receive an invitation from your GP practice then you can have your vaccination at one of our GP-led hubs. Or otherwise you can use the National Booking Service (NBS) either online or via 119 to book in at the Riverside Centre.
“If you can’t find an appointment via the NBS, then please do keep trying as more slots will become available over the coming days and weeks.
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“We thank everyone for their patience and for doing an incredible job in supporting this milestone vaccination drive.
“We are working hard to ensure everyone eligible receives their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccination either through a GP site or the Riverside Centre by the end of July, as per the government target.”
When invited, people will be able to book to receive the COVID-19 vaccine via the National Booking Service at www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call 119.
Dr Nigel Watson, Clinical Lead for the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, said:
“6 months on from the launch of the biggest vaccination programme in the history of the NHS, we’re delighted that more than 1.87m COVID-19 vaccines have been delivered across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. We continue to make strong progress and remain on track to have offered every adult in our area a first dose of the vaccine by the end of July. Thank you to all of our colleagues, partners and volunteers whose outstanding continued efforts in delivering the vaccination programme locally are helping to save lives.
“I strongly encourage anyone eligible who has not yet made an appointment to do so as soon as possible. Getting the vaccine helps protect yourself, your loved ones and our communities against COVID-19. The first dose of the vaccines offer good levels of protection, but to get maximum protection everyone will need a second dose.”
Text invitations, which do not expire, appear as an alert from ‘NHSvaccine’ and include a web link to the NHS website to reserve an appointment.
People who cannot go online can call the service on 119 instead to book their jab. People aged 39 and under who are eligible and pregnant women will be offered the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine in line with updated JCVI guidance.
Even after you have had 2 doses of your vaccination, it’s still important to remember Hands, Face, Space, wash your hands regularly, wear a face covering, maintain social distancing.
If you develop any COVID-19 symptoms, such as a new continuous cough, high temperature or a loss in taste or smell, then please self-isolate and book in for a COVID-19 test via 119.